They say forbidden fruit is always the sweetest. They never tell you how hard it can be to get. These stories are all about the thrill of the unexpected; a handsome stranger’s touch in a dark theater, a night of passion with the most unlikely of mystery men; the sheer adrenaline rush of sudden contact; the silent promise of ecstasy. The Stories: “Her Dark Passage” Ignored by her husband, and abandoned by her so-called best friend, Jessi is left alone on a rainy night to celebrate her fortieth birthday at a decrepit old movie house. But the Humphrey Bogart double feature is less interesting than the handsome young stranger who sits down next to her halfway through the show. Will Jessi ignore the boy’s subtle advances, or take a chance for once in her life? “Saturday Nights in the Middle of Nowhere” Somewhere, deep in the wild, wide-open subconscious of the southern Great Plains, the shadowy caretaker of the New Squamedaya Roadhouse tells the story of lovely aspiring country-western chanteuse, Suzan L’Amour, and the unlikely lover who changes her life forever. “The Sweet Guy Tells All” The sweet guy is a character in every romance novel, but being one in real life is no fun. Will the sweet guy finally get lucky? Or will his life continue to imitate art? “Sleeping Dogs and Southern Comfort” On a trip south with her boyfriend to attend a reunion of his old Marine unit, Nancy finds herself in a tight spot when he abandons her for the love of his life, leaving Nancy alone in an old brass bed with “the other woman’s” gorgeous, half-wit brother. Will fooling around make her boyfriend jealous, and get her off in the bargain? Or will Nancy end up with more pleasure—and more trouble—than she could possibly imagine? “Night Vision” In this noir-ish tale, a down-and-out ex jazz DJ discovers an unusual ability, born of his very ordinariness. But his new-found talent is put to the test when a beautiful, strangely troubled woman walks into his life, and leads him on a bewildering night journey, culminating in unexpected pleasure and mystery. “Three Lies Before the River” Drop-dead gorgeous Terri’s psychic ability has always given her an edge on the job, and at the poker table; until a co-worker gets under her skin and into her head. As if beating her at cards isn’t bad enough; he makes her want him obsessively, and leads her to question everything she ever thought she knew about herself. Living a lie is hard work; but learning how to let go is even harder. “Mr. Friday’s Midlife Crisis” Sixtysomething and seriously oversexed, Mr. Friday’s long overdue for a midlife crisis. The old man still has two or three items left to cross off his bucket list of ingenious kinks when he meets beautiful Sami Rosenberg; a smart-mouthed, vivacious nineteen-year-old college coed with major cash-flow problems and a boyfriend who bores her to tears. “Summer of ‘69” It’s the summer of Woodstock and the Moon landing, but for sixteen-year-old Nate, vacationing with his family on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan, the real excitement is considerably closer to home. The Establishment’s in serious trouble when long-lost “Aunt” Penny shows up for a visit. A free-spirited flower child, Penny’s the hippest, most exciting, worldly woman Nate’s ever known, an irrepressible exhibitionist with a talent for finding fun and getting everybody else into trouble along the way.